Approximately 3,800 Americans have been evacuated from Afghanistan since July 29, with an estimated 8,000 remaining in the country, an official with direct knowledge of the situation told the Daily Caller on Tuesday.
The official told the Caller that it seems “doubtful we are going to bring in 8,000 more Americans” between now and the Aug. 31 deadline. Pentagon press secretary John Kirby stated on Monday that “several thousand” Americans have been evacuated from Afghanistan. Both Kirby and National Security advisor Jake Sullivan declined to give a more specific number and the reasoning varied from non-answers to the “fluid” evacuation process going on in Kabul.
“I’d be reticent to get too much more specific than that, but since the 14th, we believe we have been able to evacuate several thousand Americans,” Kirby told reporters. Kirby also said on Tuesday that around 4,000 American passport holders and their families have been evacuated so far. He noted that the Pentagon expects “that number to continue to grow in the coming days.”
In early February, the assessment was that 16,000 Americans may be in Afghanistan, according to the official. This number has since been tailored down to around 12,000, likely because officials have been contacting Americans in an effort to sort out who remains in the country.
Over the past 24 hours, over 350 Americans departed Afghanistan, according to the official. The White House said early Tuesday that approximately 21,600 people were evacuated from Kabul from August 23 at 3:00 am to August 24 at 3:00 am.
President Joe Biden is sticking to the Aug. 31 date, although multiple lawmakers from both sides of the aisle expressed concern that the U.S. can get all Americans out by the date. White House press secretary Jen Psaki claimed in a statement Tuesday that the administration is “on pace to finish by August 31st,” despite doubt from lawmakers.